Originally Posted by Kiwideus
Brian - why is this such a big deal to you?
I've been asked to ease up a bit, so let me answer this as... gently as I can, and I'll let the discussion go on from there without me.
The debate is about teaching religious beliefs in science classes, as if they were science. I beleive that doing so has the potential to entire generations of children by substituting faith's "belief without evidence" for critical thinking skills.
To my thinking, this is as bad as if I dressed up in a shiny suit and toured the country pretending to be a man of god, holding revival meetings and "healing" people. In both cases the local population may feel better, but no good has been done.
Every day the world gets more techically complicated, and not teaching science makes our children less capable of handling this. Huge portions of our population are terrified of things like cloning or "engineered crops" when they truly have no idea what those terms really mean, how these processes are carried out, or what the real issues are. Engineered crops have the potential to bring food to the entire world, and we have citizens convincing starving countries to turn down aid containing these crops. A lack of comfort with science has convinced people here that it's better for someone in another country to starve to death then consume something that they don't understand.
Science is often accused of being emotionless, and there is a good reason for it. When you evaluate something new, when you learn something you didn't know before, there is always an emotional response, often fear or confusion. All science is is the skills needed to work through that fear and evaluate what you really see in an ordered way, so you can truly understand what is going on in front of you. To teach non-science as science prevents the development of this most important skill, and hurts the future generations.
This is a big deal to me. What could possibly be more important then the very definitions of knowledge, education, science, faith, and their applications?